Torrens, et al. v. Hood, Jr.

The bankruptcy court held that appellants violated 11 U.S.C. 527 and 528(a)(1), Florida Rules of Professional Conduct 4-3.3(a)(1), and 4-8.4(c), and possibly 18 U.S.C. 157(3) by helping appellee file an "ostensibly pro se [Voluntary Chapter 13] bankruptcy petition in bad faith to stall a foreclosure sale." The bankruptcy court held that appellants prepared the Chapter 13 petition as ghostwriters and consequently made false and fraudulent representations to the court. The court concluded that the bankruptcy court erred in its determination that appellants committed fraud when they contracted with appellee to provide foreclosure defense services, took appellee's money, had appellee sign documents, and then filed an ostensibly "pro se," bad faith bankruptcy petition on appellee's behalf. At bottom, the court concluded that appellants did not "draft" a document within the scope of Rule 4-1.2(c) and did not commit fraud in violation of the Florida Rules of Professional Conduct or 18 U.S.C. 157(3). Accordingly, the court reversed and remanded. View "Torrens, et al. v. Hood, Jr." on Justia Law